• Secretary (2002)


Release Date: September 27th, 2002

DVD Release Date: April 1st, 2003

R |1 hr 52 min

Plot Summary

Lee Holloway (Maggie Gyllenhaal), a young woman with a history of severe emotional problems, is released into the care of her overbearing parents following a stay at a mental institution. She finds work as a secretary for a rigid and demanding attorney, E. Edward Grey (James Spader), and starts dating the kind but dull Peter (Jeremy Davies). However, Lee soon realizes she's turned on by Grey's stern demeanor, and begins a sadomasochistic relationship with him.

Cast: James Spader, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jeremy Davies, Patrick Bauchau, Stephen McHattie, Oz Perkins, Jessica Tuck, Amy Locane

Director: Steven Shainberg

Genres: Drama

Production Co: Slough Pond, TwoPoundBag Productions, Double A Films

Keywords: Office, Love, 2000s, Mother, Offbeat, Father, Love triangle, House

Ratings & Reviews

  • 88
    James BerardinelliReelViews

    Has enough genuine laughs to eliminate the potential twitters and snickers, and it treats Edward and Lee as people. We end up caring about what happens to these two individuals, even as we smile and laugh at their antics. show more

  • 80
    Joe MorgensternWall Street Journal

    Lee's journey of the body and soul is something else. Maggie Gyllenhaal makes it strangely touching, a revelation.

  • 75
    Roger EbertChicago Sun-Times

    Approaches the tricky subject of sadomasochism with a stealthy tread, avoiding the dangers of making it either too offensive, or too funny. show more

See all critic reviews on metacritic.com


Nominated Best Performance By an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy